February 15, 2006
UK Parliamentary Cycling Group may be dead
I have discovered a missing link in the List!
When you click on this UK House of Commons: All-Party Parliamentary CYCLING Group, the message on the page is as follows:
NOT FOUND: The requested object does not exist on this server. The link you followed is either outdated, inaccurate, or the server has been instructed not to let you have it.
Here's the SCOOP!
According to a Document Ifound, that lists all Groups in th ALL-PARTY Group list, only those with an Asterisk are still active:
At dissolution of Parliament (11 April 2005), before the General Election, every All Party Group was disbanded. These groups had until 14 July 2005 to re-register, shortly after this date the lists were updated with the new APPG’s.
Some groups have been registered, these entries are indicated with an asterisk (*) before the group name. All other entries have not yet reregistered and so information present may not be accurate.
So what ARE these Groups all about, anyway?
From the same Document:
All-party groups are unofficial, and have a membership of backbench Members of the House of Commons, or of both Houses. They are classified either as subject groups(relating to a particular topic eg. forestry) or relating to a particular country or region).
The groups tend on the whole to cover subjects which are not generally contentious in party terms. These groups flourish and wane according to the interests and enthusiasm of Members and with the topicality of various subjects. They reflect the interests of the day and therefore may change frequently.
Over the years since 1945, it has been argued, less and less influence has been exerted by backbench Members in the formulation of government policy, and there has been insufficient consultation between backbenchers and Ministers.
All-party groups can sometimes serve as a counterbalance to this. They have a liaison function and can, when necessary, exert pressure on a Minister to modify policy or influence legislation and further action in particular areas. They thus play a part in the flexible pattern of consultation that Governments nowadays employ in order to sound out views both inside and outside Parliament. Non party activity is important, for it ensures that parliamentary life is not wholly dominated by party feeling. It helps Members to appreciate the qualities of their political opponents, and to establish yet more firmly an underlying consensus about the value of parliamentary institutions.
To sum up, all-party groups may draw attention to certain aspects of public affairs, may assist in keeping the Government informed of parliamentary opinion, and may act as pressure-groups to promote some particular cause.
And as Peter Richards said in The Backbenchers ( Faber & Faber, 1974): Non party activity is important, for it ensures that parliamentary life is not wholly dominated by party feeling. It helps Members to appreciate the qualities of their political opponents, and to establish yet more firmly an underlying consensus about the value of parliamentary institutions.
So I checked the list for the Bike Group's Status.
There was no Asterisk next the entry:
CYCLING GROUP (APPG)
Statement of Purpose: To promote the use of bicycles as a mode of transport and to raise the profile and status of
cycling both inside and outside the House.
Sec. Lord Berkeley (Lab); Tre: Viscount Craigavon (CB);Patron: Sir George Young MP (Con); Contact: Mr Oliver Hatch,
31 Arodene Road, London, SW2 2BQ Tel. 020 8671 7561
Thornberry's site has an inoperative link to the Group Page.
Stunell's site has no link at all.
Robathan has no website.
Prosser's site has no link at all.
Young's site has no link at all.
As for His Lordship and His Viscountship... I found pages with pictures, and not much else.
I have no idea who Mr. Hatch is.
I REALLY need to keep up with the fate of my links. ;-D
Stay tuned as I will try to ascertain wassup with the Group ( E-mail sent to Chairman ), and if it still exists at all. ;-D
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I am the inventor of the Gemara Cycle Security System, patented back in the 80's, and subsequently became the most successful security system for cycles;they have been o/s Bournemouth Town Hall for over 14 YEARS without a bike, or part of a bike stolen.I lost a lot of my own money putting it where my mouth was...I now wish to resurrect Gemara, but have no help from anywhere. I now live in Dover, whose MP is Gwyn Prosser, Chair of the Parliamentary Cycling Group. Do you think that he might want to hitch his wagon to a star, and contact/help me? If he is out there, my number is 07982086173. I won't hold my breath, but mind you, when It first appeared in the Daily Mail, Observer Magazine, on Radio 1, 4, and Overseas, and my interview on GMTV, as the the Police Officer who thought of a 100% solution to bike thefts, my local MP at the time was all over me.....
Posted by: ray.burridge | Sep 17, 2008 9:03:16 AM